Saturday Song

Here's Breaking Benjamin with Breath

Review: Shield of Winter by Nalini Singh (+ a Giveaway)

Assassin. Soldier. Arrow. That is who Vasic is, who he will always be. His soul drenched in blood, his conscience heavy with the weight of all he’s done, he exists in the shadows, far from the hope his people can almost touch—if only they do not first drown in the murderous insanity of a lethal contagion. To stop the wave of death, Vasic must complete the simplest and most difficult mission of his life.

For if the Psy race is to survive, the empaths must wake…

Having rebuilt her life after medical “treatment” that violated her mind and sought to stifle her abilities, Ivy should have run from the black-clad Arrow with eyes of winter frost. But Ivy Jane has never done what she should. Now, she'll fight for her people, and for this Arrow who stands as her living shield, yet believes he is beyond redemption. But as the world turns to screaming crimson, even Ivy’s fierce will may not be enough to save Vasic from the cold darkness…

The PsyNet is collapsing. It's being tainted and eaten up by a infection that's turning Psy crazy since the fall of Silence and the effected Psy are killing humans and changelings.

Kaleb Krychek is desperate to save the Psy and comes up with a plan that has the Psy with the E designation being the saviors of their race. He collects E's and brings them to SnowDancer property to try and train under the protection of the Arrows. Each Arrow has their own E to protect and in Vasic's case that E is Ivy Jane.

From the first moment that Ivy sees Vasic she feels a pull to him. He's closed off, sure, but that doesn't stop her from seeing under the cold exterior into the heart of the man that he's tried to hide for many years.

Vasic is taken with Ivy in a way he's never been with a woman before. From the time he was 4 he was trained to be an Arrow but under the cold exterior lies the heart of a man that definitely feels. He wants to protect the Psy and will do all in his power to do so but his first priority becomes Ivy as he falls more in love with her each day.

The E's are n't prepared for the gruesome, bloody scenes they see that increase daily, but they must find a way to stop the contagion from growing and taking over the minds of all Psy.

Wow. Just...wow. I'm not even sure I can voice how much I loved this book. I thought that seeing Kaleb Krychek crack in the last book was amazing, and it was, don't get me wrong, but seeing cold, I-only-follow-orders Vasic falling in love was amazing.

I've known throughout the series that there was so much more to Vasic than we saw. He was a man under all of that control and one that cared about people in his own Arrow way. He was wholly unprepared for what he saw in and felt for Ivy but he didn't shy from it or run from it as I expected him to. He was a wonderful hero and I loved reading about him.

Now Ivy, she was such the opposite of Silence I don't think there was a word for it. The fact that she lived through the rehabilitation that they forced on her showed how incredible this woman was. I loved her forthrightness despite her shyness with Vasic and the fact that she didn't back down even when he tried to shut her out on occasion. She was absolutely the perfect heroine for him.

The story, with it's ups, downs, ins, outs and twists was a pleasure to read, as are all of Singh's books. She knows how to weave the romance into the overall story arc and I adore her writing. I'm constantly amazed at how this author's mind works! Singh's books are definitely nothing ordinary – more like extraordinary.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Nalini Singh


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Review: Don't Blackmail the Vampire by Tiffany Allee

Rachel Davis will do anything to get her sister out of a bad relationship with her fiancé. Even if it involves a few fibs, a little breaking-and-entering, and blackmailing the fiancé's potential boss, Charles, for his help. So what if the handsome Charles happens to be a vampire?

Charles Wright has found the perfect way to trap the man threatening his brother's wife: cozy up to him, get invited along on the skiing trip, and then search for incriminating evidence. How much better that audacious but gorgeous Rachel is just as eager to nail the bastard. As far as he's concerned, there's nothing wrong with a little blackmail between two consenting adults. Especially when it's time for Rachel to pay up.


Rachel and her sister, Kristen, are on a ski trip in Colorado. Along with them is Brent who is Kristen’s fiancé and the man that Rachel wants her sister to kick to the curb. Rachel dislikes Brent intensely and wants nothing more than to get her sister away from the big slime ball. Unfortunately Kristen is being pretty stubborn and Rachel’s pretty much at her wits end and isn’t sure what to do next to accomplish her goal.

Charles is investigating Brent to see if he’s the man who has been threatening his sister-in-law. He’s in Colorado and with Brent’s group of friends under the guise of a possible employer for Brent. He doesn’t expect to get distracted by anyone or anything but he does, and in a big way, by Rachel. Not only does she find out he’s a vampire immediately but she then tries to blackmail him into helping her with Brent. Charles can’t be blackmailed, really, but he plays along with Rachel because he thinks this might help his cause. She's strangely resistant to his mind control but he deep down he knows she won't betray his secret. Of course he doesn’t tell her why he’s really there but he only feels a little bad about this.

While Charles and Rachel are working together they spend quite a bit of time together and they eventually can’t deny their attraction to each other – both physically and emotionally. They end up in bed but Rachel, who is completely distrustful of men, isn’t willing to give Charles the chance he wants to see if the relationship can work after the ski trip is over. Can he talk her into believing that he’s a good guy, ok vampire, and not someone who’s going to break her heart?

This was a cute story that not only had to do with romance but also with family love and loyalty. I enjoyed seeing the lengths that both Charles and Rachel would go for their siblings.

The romance between Charles and Rachel was slow moving but rather intense. Charles continually tried to keep his hands to himself as he just didn’t want a woman for the long term (yeah, right) and Rachel had such deep seeded trust issues she kept telling herself that it was just sex. Between the two of them it was an interesting push/pull that went on a tad too long for my liking. I honestly thought that Rachel held out for too long but when I mentioned deep seeded trust issues I meant DEEP SEEDED. Dang, that girl’s dad messed her up but good when he walked out on the family.

For all the talk between Charles and Rachel to plan for getting Kristen to see Brent for the ass that he was, not a whole lot got accomplished. I think they talked more than they acted and this slowed the book down some, imho, but gave them the chance to have sex so there is that. :) I didn’t feel that we got to know our characters too well either – it was all pretty much in the moment and I definitely wanted to know more about both MC's.

Overall it was an entertaining book that was a good combination of serious, funny and sexy.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Tiffany Allee

Review: The Kraken King Part VII: The Kraken King and the Empress’s Eyes by Meljean Brook

Warning: This review may contain spoilers from The Kraken King Parts I-VI.

In the imperial city, nothing escapes the attention of the empress’s spies. After a visit from an old friend rekindles her every fear, Zenobia must decide whether to trust Ariq with her heart—and the Kraken King must decide whether he can ever let her go.

But when danger invades their lovers’ sanctuary, Ariq and Zenobia will have to put aside their troubled emotions. Outwitting their enemies and the Empress will be no easy feat. Luckily, they have a few allies waiting in the wings…

Ariq and Zenobia are in the Imperial City and Ariq is trying to drum up contacts so that he can get to the Empress.  He needs to impress upon her the truth about the marauders and who's really behind it all. Unfortunately he's not having much luck.  He feels the need to return to Krakentown to see what's happening as he's heard nothing from the people he's sent.

Unfortunately Ariq and Zenobia get a visit from the Captain of the Empresses Guard and the Empress...kind of.  They want information from Ariq and they aren't afraid to go to extreme lengths to get it.

This was an amazing episode!  I can't begin to you tell the the vast array of emotions this one brought out in me.  It started off with Zenobia's letter to her brother Archimedes at the start of the book.  I hadn't even started main part of the story and I needed a tissue cuz I was getting choked up.  

The story takes us further into the relationship between Ariq and Zenobia and their misinterpretations of the others feelings.  Ariq still thinks that he's fighting to crumble the walls of Zenobia's heart even though she loves him (but she's never said it out loud) and Zenobia fears that that love she has with Ariq will fall apart at any moment. I just love A & Z together and frankly seeing their angst was a bit heart wrenching for me.  They really are the perfect couple and once they work out everything out I think they'll be awesome.

The story then flows into a "visit" from the Empress and her Guard.  They are determined to get information from Ariq (isn't everyone?) and let's just say they don't play nice.  I was on the edge of my seat.  I have to thoroughly applaud Meljean Brook on her crazy brain.  (lol - I mean that in the best possible way, of course.) Her imagination boggles my mind and I find the different mechanical objects ad scenarios she comes up with in The Iron Seas series fascinating.  This installment was no different with her automaton and screw beetles...and how they're used - wow.  

Unfortunately the story was left on a freakin cliffhanger!!!  I seriously yelled NOOOO! out loud when the book ended (yes, scared the crap outta the cat).  I'm just not sure I can wait until next week to find out what happens.  Well, I can, I just may be bald by next Tuesday. The story is an intense, hang on to the edge of your seat kind of novella.  It's gritty and exciting while still being a total romance.  I loved every minute of it and can't wait for part VIII.

Rating: 5 out of 5

Saugatuck Summer by Amelia C. Gormley Virtual Book Tour, Giveaway and Guest Review


Hi, and welcome to the Saugatuck Summer blog tour! Thank you to Tracy’s Place. You're very welcome!  I'm happy to have you!

Reviews for hosting me today! For those of you who have seen me talking about it on social media for the last nearly year and a half, you know that Saugatuck Summer was a labor of love far beyond what I would normally claim for one of my books. Of course I love them all, but Saugatuck Summer came from my very soul. Actually, I’m not certain it came from me at all.

Basically, here’s what happened: One day I was driving along, running errands, and Topher Carlisle whispered one line of dialogue in my ear. Just one. When I asked him what I was supposed to do with that, he promptly took over my brain for fifteen absolutely insane days and at the end I had the first draft of Saugatuck Summer.

Topher’s story of recovery, hope, making mistakes, and growing up just told itself, and the experience of being the conduit for that was at times grueling and heartbreaking, but also euphoric and wonderful. It was one of those experiences that, as a creator of some form of art, be it musical, visual, or literary, you have once or twice in a lifetime if you’re extraordinarily lucky, when you know you’re creating something magical. I’m not sure it will ever happen to me again, but I feel absolutely blessed that this book has come of it.

This week on the Saugatuck Summer blog tour, I’ll be sharing some bonus content from the book and a sneak peek at another upcoming book in the Saugatuck universe. I’ll also be having a heart-to-heart discussion with Marie Sexton about our experiences as adult children of alcoholics and how they translated into writing our ACOA characters from Saugatuck Summer and Family Man, giving you a peek at some of “Jace’s” art, and I’ll be sharing the official Saugatuck Summer soundtrack from a brilliant singer/songwriter of my personal acquaintance, Casey Stratton.

And finally, all week long I’ll be asking trivia questions from Saugatuck Summer and this week’s blog tour articles, and each correct answer emailed to me offers you a chance to win your choice of any of my backlist titles!

So put on your sunscreen and let’s go!

***

HOW TO WIN YOUR CHOICE OF ANY SINGLE BOOK FROM MY BACKLIST (all-in-one volumes not included):

At each stop along the blog tour I’ll be asking a trivia question from Saugatuck Summer. Yes, this means some familiarity with the book is required, whether you purchase a copy, have an ARC, or employ the Kindle or B&N lending programs. If you visit some of the other blog tour stops, you might also find the answer in some of the excerpts.

PLEASE DO NOT ANSWER IN THE COMMENTS. Instead, send the answer to me privately by using this contact form. Each response will enter you into the drawing and three winners will be picked. The more questions you answer, the more entries you get. You can choose from any of the following titles:

Inertia (Impulse, Book One)
Acceleration (Impulse, Book Two)
Velocity (Impulse, Book Three)
The Laird’s Forbidden Lover
An Inch at a Time (The Professor’s Rule #2)
Inch by Inch (The Professor’s Rule #3)
Every Inch of the Way (The Professor’s Rule #4)
To the Very Last Inch (The Professor’s Rule #5)
Strain


(Note: Giving an Inch (The Professor’s Rule #1) is already available free at Riptide, and my pre-Saugatuck novella, The Field of Someone Else’s Dreams, is available for free at Amazon, All Romance eBooks, and elsewhere.)

Again, please do not post your answer in the comments, but submit it to me privately.


To give people time to read and respond, the contest will remain open for one month after the release of Saugatuck Summer. It will close on June 19, and the drawing will be held on June 20.

Today’s Saugatuck Summer trivia question:

Chapter 25, what major event happens to Ling, Geoff, and Robin?

***

One summer can change everything.

Hi, I’m Topher Carlisle: twenty-one, pretty, and fabulous. At least, that’s what I keep telling myself. But let’s get real. Walking the fake-it-til-you-make-it road to independence and self-respect isn’t easy. Especially since my mom’s a deadbeat alcoholic, and most of my family expects me to turn out just as worthless. Oh, and I’m close to losing my college swimming scholarship, so let’s add “dropout” to the list.

My BFF has invited me to stay at her beach house on the shore of Lake Michigan. That’ll give me one summer to make money and figure out what I want to do with my life. So of course I decide to have an affair with my BFF’s married, closeted dad. Because that always works out.

Now I’m homeless, friendless, jobless. Worthless. Just like my family expects, right? Except there’s this great guy, Jace, who sees it differently. He’s got it all together in ways I can only dream of—he’s hot, creative, insightful, understanding. He seems to think I don’t give myself enough credit. And if I don’t watch out, I may start to believe him.

Guest Review by Judith of Dr. J.'s Book Place 


I don't often read and review M/M novels but I was asked to do so and was happy to do so. This is a very emotional story that is written in the first person so that the reader has an opportunity to enter more fully into the experience of the main character—Christopher Carlisle—more often known as Topher. It is not a format I normally like very well and perhaps that is because I prefer to be a distant observer to the action in the novel. That is not possible here. The author has done a stellar job of drawing the reader into the personal angst of the characters and believe me, there's lots of hurt and anxiety here, more than enough to go around.

At first glance Topher seems to be a young man who is merely hoping to find a summer job so that he can make up for the shortfall in his finances for the coming college year. As a student on an athletic scholarship he must still meet some of his expenses himself and so far he has been able to do so without going into debt with school loans. It appears that his very best friend Mo has offered him lodging and some of his meals at her family's summer home in Saugatuck, Michigan, located right on Lake Michigan, thus saving him a good deal of money on lodging and such. However, Mo has ended up as a camp counselor all summer and Topher is left with only the company of Mo's dad, Brendan.

Here it is important that the reader understand that Topher is a 21 year old gay man who appears to be making his way through college with his life reasonably together emotionally. Nothing could be further from the truth. What begins to emerge as the story progresses is that this young man has had his self-esteem systematically dismantled by family members throughout his growing-up years. He was taken from his mom along with his sisters at a young age. She was an alcoholic and proved unequal to the parenting task. Yet the very people who should have supported Topher in his emotional and psychological development were the ones that abused him repeatedly. Not physical abuse, mind you, but the kind of wounds that hurtful words cause. His family appeared to accept his gender preferences yet they undercut his belief in himself with long lectures about all his perceived faults, his behavior that caused embarrassment to them and the family, and his culpability for any and all negative occurrences in his and their lives.

Because of Topher's need to be understood and valued for who he is, he is grateful for the understanding and friendship that is extended to him by Mo's dad. Brendan was a professor who was writing a textbook over the summer, but the times he and Topher shared meals or relaxing times in the evening were so very important to Topher. It turns out that Brendan is a closet bisexual who has never allowed himself to express his attraction to men. Now, for the first time ever, he draws Topher into a sexual affair that both know is wrong on so many levels but which each man seems to be either unwilling or unable to curtail. Not only does Topher lose a safe place to reside over the summer when the affair ends, but he also loses the warmth and personal encouragement that had meant so much to him in the early days of his friendship with Brendan. He is also terrified that he will ultimately lose Mo's friendship.

It is important that the reader not get bogged down by this affair as in the long run, it serves as a wake-up call for Topher and brings him into the circle of several local individuals who are in a long-term committed gay relationship and whose maturity and experience give Topher stability at a difficult time. He also meets an artist from Chicago who travels to Saugatuck frequently and show art is displayed and sold through the local art gallery, one of the owners of which is one of the gay partners who have become mentors to Topher. It is Jace who gradually begins to challenge Topher to see his early life experiences honestly and to identify them as abuse that has effectively diminished his sense of self and engendered the attitude that he is unworthy, lacking true talent, and is really a person who has nothing anyone can find valuable.

This is a story that is full of the realities and insights regarding the damage friends and relatives do all in the name of "saving someone from themselves." While Topher's family never overtly tried to reorient him to being straight, they almost did the same thing covertly as they dismantled his faith in his ability to make good decisions about friendships, discouraging his friendships with other boys all in the name of saving him from embarrassing situations. It is a story that allows the reader to walk this summer journey with Topher and to experience his joys and his disappointments in others and in himself, to share in his struggles and to learn as he eventually does that there really is someone "out there" who sees him for who he truly is and who has the patience and loving care to stay the course with him.

The book is beautifully written and constructed by an author who appears to know what she is doing when it come to putting a good story together. It was really an enjoyable reading experience as the story flowed and was edited well. The characters were all well-developed and I had the feeling that they were iconic—symbols of people who populate all our lives in one way or another. It turned out to be a very good novel and one that I was glad I read. Readers who like M/M romance fiction will like this book. Those who are just discovering this genre of romance fiction would do well to add this book to their "to be read" list. It's a very fine novel that deserves to be read and appreciated. 

I give it a rating of 4 out of 5

***


Be sure to check out the Saugatuck Summer soundtrack by singer/songwriter Casey Stratton!

Amelia C. Gormley may seem like anyone else. But the truth is she sings in the shower, dances doing laundry, and writes blisteringly hot m/m erotic romance while her son is at school. When she’s not writing in her Pacific Northwest home, Amelia single-handedly juggles her husband, her son, their home, and the obstacles of life by turning into an everyday superhero. And that, she supposes, is just like anyone else.

Her self-published novel-in-three-parts, Impulse (Inertia, Book One; Acceleration, Book Two; and Velocity, Book Three) can be found at most major online book retailers, and be sure to check Riptide for her latest releases, including her Highland historical, The Laird’s Forbidden Lover, the The Professor’s Rule series of erotic novelettes (co-written with Heidi Belleau), the post-apocalyptic romance, Strain, and her upcoming, New Adult contemporary, Saugatuck Summer, available now.

You can contact Amelia on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, BookLikes, Tumblr, or contact her by email using the form at http://ameliacgormley.com/about/

What I Read Last Week

Hey guys!  Hope you're having a nice Monday.  For those of you in the US...Happy Memorial Day.


Nothing much has been happening around here lately so I guess I'll just get down to what I read last week:

I started the week with The Witch of Clan Sinclair by Karen Ranney.  This story is about Mairi Sinclair who lives in Edinburgh and runs her deceased father's printing press.  She is getting more involved in women's rights and this ends up butting heads with the Provost of Edinburgh.  The pair squabble but they can't deny their attraction to each other.  This was a really great story and I very much enjoyed both Mairi and Logan's characters.  4 out of 5

Next was Don't Blackmail the Vampire by Tiffany Allee.  Rachel is trying everything to get her sister away from her loser of a fiance and Charles is trying to figure out if the loser fiance, Brent, is making threatening phone calls to his sister-in-law.  Rachel finds out that Charles is a vampire and attempts to blackmail her into help her with her sister.  The story is cute and fun.  I'll post a review later this week.  3.5 out of 5

The Reiver by Jackie Barbosa is a short story about a Laird who captures a reiver on his land and throws him in the dungeon.  Then he figures out he's a she and ends up falling in love with her.  Too bad he doesn't anything about her. It's a pretty fast story as it's so short but it was cute.  3 out of 5

Blind Faith by Rebecca Zanetti is Nate's story in the Sin Brothers series.  He's still looking for the codes to deactivate the kill switches and tries using his connection with his old love to get them.  He doesn't realize that's he's never stopped loving her and that poses a problem when he's trying to stay objective.  A good book - I'll post my review later this week.  4 out of 5

There's Wild, Then There's You by M. Leighton is the story of Violet who meets Jet at a Sex addicts anonymous meeting and neither can get the other out of their minds.  The problem is that Violet stood up and said she was a SA but she's not.  She hates deceiving him but she likes him so much and is afraid to lose him.  I'll post my review of this one soon. 4 out of 5

Last for the week was Planning for Love by Christi Barth.  This is a cute story that involves wedding planner Ivy who ends up falling for Bennett.  Ivy is a head in the clouds, everything's rainbows and butterflies type of girl and Bennett is an anti-romance, cynical, the glass is half empty kind of guy.  They make a strange pair but Ivy is determined to make Bennett fall in love with her.  It's cute but a little slow in the middle.  It wrapped up with a nice bow at the end which was a little disconcerting as I just didn't see Ben changing his mind about love.  *shrugs* 3 out of 5


My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
*crickets*

Happy Reading!

Saturday Song

Today I have a song for you from Pop Evil who hails from Michigan.  Here's Torn to Pieces for your listening pleasure. :)  Enjoy!

Review: Whisper to Me by Christina Lee

At college, Rachel has a reputation for being a sarcastic flirt with a thing for star athletes. No one at school knows that she’d had her heart ripped to shreds by her high school sweetheart, who’d driven them both off the side of the road on a borrowed motorcycle, and then abandoned her. No one knows the real Rachel Mattson—except one person…

Ever since he helped nurse his sister’s feisty best friend back to health, pierced bass player Kai Nakos has been head over heels in love. But the supposed bad boy can’t risk letting Rachel know the truth—especially now that the two of them are back in their hometown for the summer, together for the first time since the months following that fateful night. Never mind that Rachel’s ex is back, groveling for her forgiveness.

Shaken by her ex’s return, Rachel finds herself turning to the one guy she knows she can trust. Kai is willing to hide his feelings for her, just to have Rachel touch him again. After all, this is only a temporary fling. Until it becomes something more. But maybe it had been more all along.


When Rachel was in high school she was in a motorcycle accident with her boyfriend Miles. While Miles came away with a few bumps and scrapes Rachel ended up with a traumatic brain injury. It took her many months in rehab to be completely functional again. When she was back on her feet she headed off to college and hasn't been home often since then. She's soon to be a Senior and not really happy about being home for the summer but her mother needs Rachel's
 help moving her business to a different location. She's staying the summer with her best friend Dakota not knowing when she made the plans that Dakota's brother, Kai, would be in residence as well.

Kai is a young man who is in flux. He is a musician who has been studying music theory in Amsterdam as well as working at a recording studio. An incident and misunderstanding at the recording studio causes issues and that means he's now back home for the summer. He's staying with his sister as he works for his family's casino. Kai is thrilled to see Rachel home. Since he was by her side, as her friend, for the majority of her rehab he came to know her better and eventually fell completely in love with her. He's never said anything to her or to anyone about it and has tried not to show his feelings. During an emotional moment Rachel and Kai kiss and go a bit farther. Kai is thrilled but doesn't want to scare Rachel off. He tells her he's there for her whenever she needs a shoulder to cry on. She takes him up on his offer.

Rachel and Kai start spending their nights together doing wonderfully erotic things but not actually going all the way. They get closer and closer emotionally and their chemistry is off the charts.  Neither knows how the other is feeling and they're both afraid to mess up their friendship. In this case having a close friendship might actually count in the con column rather than the pro column.

Where to begin with telling you how much I liked this story?? There were so many things to like I'm not sure where to start.

Kai – he is wonderful. He's got it goin' on in the looks department, that's for sure. He's half Dutch, half Native American and has piercings in awesome places. How could I not lust after this guy? Lol As sweet and kind as Kai could be – and he really could be – he was a dirty talker in bed and that just made his times with Rachel that much more incredible. He's smart, fun, funny, loves his family and would do anything for Rachel. Completely sigh worthy in my book.

Rachel is gorgeous and a really good person who's made some bad decisions in her life. After the accident she was thought of in town as the girl with the brain injury - she hated it. Going off to college she could remake herself into anyone she wanted and she did. She was the party girl who got attached to no one. Unfortunately her worlds collided which caused a bit of strife with all of her friends. She was a bit of a lost soul and Kai helped her find her way.

The friends to lovers story that Lee gave us was really pretty outstanding, I must say. The writing, the story, the secondary characters that all played a role in the romance, the hero and heroine...everything was damned near perfect. The angst in this one was pretty low, which I loved and it made the book that much better.

This has been a wonderful series so far and this was a perfect addition.  It's one book I'll definitely be recommending to my friends – if they haven't read it already – that's for sure.


Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Christina Lee

Review: The Wedding Secret by Jeannie Moon

Millionaire baseball player Kevin Rossi is quite a catch…

Harper Poole’s Harvard MBA and killer instincts have made her a high-powered assistant at a software firm that generates billions. No one would ever guess she’s been keeping a secret: that she isn’t the trust fund baby everyone thinks she is, but was really raised in a trailer park in western Pennsylvania. Harper has a great life and has everything she wants—except love. But a one-night stand at a wedding with the bride’s brother can help take a girl’s mind off anything.

Kevin Rossi is a superstar major league catcher who can have any woman he wants. So when Harper discovers she’s pregnant after their one night of passion, she has no intention of making any demands on him. It will just be another secret to keep. But when the two meet again a year later, Harper wrestles with her choice—especially when her heart longs for the father of her baby…


Harper and Kevin can't seem to stay away from each other at Kevin's sister's wedding. They end up in the wine cellar making whoopie...and making a baby.

Now it's a year later and Kevin is back in town and Harper's got a great big case of the guilts. While Harper and Kevin had been seeing each other for a bit after they first had sex, no one actually knew that they were dating. Then Kevin took a baseball contract in San Diego (Harper lives in NY) and he was gone. Now that he's in town Harper realizes her mistake in not telling him about his daughter so she invites him over to tell him.

To say that Kevin isn't happy with Harper for keeping pregnancy/baby a secret is putting it mildly. He's justifiably pissed but is completely entranced by his daughter. He finds that as pissed as he is at Harper he can't seem to get her out of his head. He semi understands her reasons but that doesn't make them right. His family is considerably mad at Harper as well and this makes him protective of Harper.

Soon everyone cools down and Kevin and Harper start seeing each other again but there's more strife to come. Harper wasn't forthcoming about her childhood and this causes more issues between the two. The pair love each other but there may be too many emotional hurdles in their way to be together.

The Secret Wedding is more like The Secret Baby. Yes, Kevin and Harper had sex at a wedding and kept it a secret – for a while – but really that wasn't the premise of the book at all. The story revolved around the fact that after that wedding rendezvous, Harper kept the fact of her pregnancy and the birth of her child a secret from the baby's father. Her reasoning for keeping the baby a secret was...far fetched. What it really came down to was that Harper was unsure of the reception of the news so kept it a secret. Not a good enough reason in my book. I have to admit she really did everything she could, once she told Kevin, to make things right. She was open and giving to him and to his family and made the baby, Anna, available to her aunts, uncles and grandmother. Harper was a really good person she had just made one major mistake. I liked her but I really couldn't identify with her at all and this caused me to not feel as connected to her as a character as I felt I should be.

Now Kevin, he was a jerk. He grew throughout the book and that was awesome, but for most of the book he wasn't all that great. He had a temper, and was kind of a hot-head, and when he should have been understanding he lost his mind in anger. He was stubborn and selfish as well which weren't pluses in my book! Now he could be kind and warm at times, especially to his daughter, which brought him up a few notches in the ratings.

The story was pretty hot in the sex department, that's for sure. As much as I couldn't relate to the hero and heroine I did like the writing in the book. It definitely kept my attention and kept me turning pages – a very good thing.


Rating: 3 out of 5


Jeannie Moon

Book Spotlight: Whisper to Me by Christina Lee (+ a Giveaway!)

Hot and consuming, this is a New Adult romance about a wayward musician and the one girl who keeps him grounded…

At college, Rachel has a reputation for being a sarcastic flirt with a thing for ripped athletes. No one at college knows her heart was ripped to shreds by her high school boyfriend, who’d driven them both off the side of the road on a borrowed motorcycle. And then subsequently abandoned her. No one really knows Rachel Mattson at all, with one exception…

Ever since he helped nurse his sister’s feisty best friend back to health, pierced bass player Kai Nakos has been head over heels in love. But the supposed bad boy can’t risk letting Rachel know the truth—especially now that the two of them are back in their hometown for the summer, together for the first time since the months following that horrible night. Never mind that Rachel’s ex is also back, groveling for her forgiveness.

Shaken by her ex’s return, Rachel finds herself turning to the one guy she knows she can trust. Now that Kai has had a taste of Rachel, he’s willing to do anything just to have her touch him again, even hiding his true feelings. After all, she only wants a temporary fling. Until it becomes something more. But perhaps it had been more all along.




Author Bio:

Mother, wife, reader, dreamer. Christina lives in the Midwest with her husband and son--her two favorite guys. She's addicted to lip gloss, salted caramel everything, and believes in true love and kissing, so writing romance novels has become a dream job.

Connect with Christina:
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Review: The Kraken King Part VI: The Kraken King and the Crumbling Walls by Meljean Brook

Warning: This review contains spoilers from Parts I, II, III, IV & V of The Kraken King.

Reunited, Ariq and Zenobia must journey over the red wall and make a desperate appeal to the one woman with enough power to halt the marauders’ plans—the Empress of Nippon.

But even the Kraken King cannot demand the attentions of an empress. Masked and quarantined, Ariq and Zenobia are forced to bide their time. Despite the fact that they are as physically close as two people can be, Zenobia is trying to keep the man she can’t help but love at a distance, terrified she’ll be hurt again. And all the while, the mysteries of the Living City grow around them…


Ariq and Zenobia arrive in the Red City to seek help for Krakentown from the French Ambassador and eventually the Empress. Ariq knows that he’s now fighting two wars – one to save his town and one to win Zenobia’s heart. He’s determined to win both of them. Because of his past as a rebel he knows that assistance from the Empress will be hard to come by. He even uses his parentage as an “in” in hopes that the connection may sway things in his favor. In order to go to the part of the city where the Empress resides they must be quarantined and masked. Zenobia decides to accompany Ariq as she feels safest with him. She also knows that their night of passion that was interrupted by an abduction will soon happen and the anticipation is killing her.

Zenobia, who had thought that the marriage the she and Ariq agreed to was prentend, is shocked to find out that it's real. He believes her his wife but she’s not sure if he’s her husband. In the Golden Empire an agreement between the two parties is all that is needed to make it legit. Zenobia obviously didn’t know that but she agrees that she will stay with Ariq to try and get to know him and see if the marriage can work. The story gives us insights into Ariq's life that are both fascinating and heart-wrenching.

Zenobia and Ariq are becoming closer and finally end up in bed together – wow, just…wow. Their love and passion make those scenes so wonderful and I can almost applaud Brook for making us wait so long as it was definitely worth the wait.

Once again the descriptions rocked.  The buildings made of coral, the ocean, the sunrise – it all made for a wonderful picture in my mind. I’m anxiously awaiting the time when Ariq meets the Empress (as I assume he will) to see what that will be like. As the plot thickens in this serial I find myself at the edge of my seat. I want Ariq and Zenobia together permanently, I want Krakentown to be saved and I want a HEA for everyone! lol I find myself getting impatient to see what happens next. This installment was much quieter than some of the others, but no less intense.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Meljean Brook


What I Read Last Week

Well another week has gone by and here we are again. :) It looks like it’s going to be a beautiful day here in So Cal. The heat last week was unbearable so I’m hoping it stays in the 70’s today. Hey, I’d even take the low 80’s at this point! lol

This weekend was pretty cool. I attended the wedding of my boss and her partner and it was beautiful. They’re just so cute together! :) My oldest daughter, sap that she is, was bawling during the ceremony cuz she thought it was so sweet, which it was. :) Not only is my boss her priest but her partner is the bell conductor for the bell choir that my girls are in so she has a pretty strong attachment to both women.

 


Anyway, on to what I read last week:

I started off the week with Shield of Winter by Nalini Singh. Holy guacamole this was a good book. This is Vasic’s romance which I’ve been waiting forever for! I’ve really liked him since the first moment he came on page so it was wonderful reading about his romance with Ivy – an Psy of E designation. The story that throws them together is incredible and I definitely recommend reading it. 5 out of 5

Whisper to Me by Christina Lee is book 3 in the Between Breaths series. This was a fab installment that put Rachel – a girl we thought we knew up until now – and Kai, a childhood friend, together. It was an incredible friends to lovers story and is not one you’ll want to miss. 4.5 out of 5

One Hot Scot by Suzanne Enoch is a novella in the Scandalous Highlanders series. This story is about a woman who is kidnapped and manages to escape. She ends up with, you guessed it, one hot Scot and he helps her with her kidnapper. The story was adorable as well as oh so sexy and I really enjoyed it. 4 out of 5

Dreams of Wolf by Miranda Stowe is a story about a woman who is a nanny. She saves her charges (or she thinks she saves them) from a large wolf one day. The wolf ends up following the woman and crawling in to bed with her. She thinks she’s having nightly dreams about this wonderful werewolf man but it’s all real. Needless to say she’s a bit freaked out when she finds out it’s real as well as the fact that he’s really a shapeshifter. The story was cute and definitely hot. The first part of the story told about his mother and included a sex scene and I didn’t care for that part at all. I’m sure it was supposed to be titillating but I didn’t find it to be at all. 3 out of 5

Next up was Score by Gina Watson. This novella involves Chloe who wakes up in Vegas next to Caleb St. Martin. He has been the bane of her existence most of her life as they grew up neighbors and he seemed to bully her. He doesn’t see it that way but understands how she might. Now that he’s been with her he’s not willing to give her up but Chloe has quite a bit of emotional baggage to wade through before she can accept him. This was a cute story. The sex scenes were hot but Chloe annoyed the heck out of me. She was always storming off somewhere and it got old. Caleb may not have been the perfect man but I liked him a heck of a lot more than I liked Chloe. There were some parts of the story that were very touching as it had to do with a friend and his battle with ALS and I really enjoyed those portions of the book. 3 out of 5

Last for the week was The Wedding Secret by Jeannie Moon. This story is about a couple who ends up having sex at the man’s sister’s wedding. It turns into a secret baby story and has many ups and downs. I’ll post my review for this one this week. 3 out of 5

 






My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
*crickets*

Happy Reading!

Saturday Song

I'm sorry I've been AWOL on the SS the past couple of weeks - sorry about that.  I guess I was just distracted by life. :)  I'm back and today I have Demon Hunter for you playing The Last One Alive.  Enjoy!
 

Review: Dark Heat: The Dark Kings Stories by Donna Grant

Dark Craving

Fueled by ancient magic—and enflamed by human desire—the Dragon King known as Hal can transform himself at will into one of the legendary winged creatures he is sworn to protect. But one thing he can never do is fall in love...with a mortal woman.


Everything has gone wrong in Cassie’s life and she’s down on her luck. Her brother, Dan, who lives in Scotland has agreed to let her live in his cottage which happens to be near Dreagan land – the land of the Dragon Kings who are dragon shifters.

Cassie manages to make it to Dan’s cottage but can’t make it inside the house during a blizzard. She almost dies in her car but is saved by Dragon King Hal. Hal is immediately drawn to Cassie and when she wakes up, she’s drawn to him as well. They can’t seem to stay away from each other, though Hal does try. He and his fellow Dragon Kings had had a spell put on them many years before so that they would feel nothing towards humans (their kind had been betrayed by a human in the past). Unfortunately Hal’s feelings are blowing the spell right out of the water. He becomes determined to stay with Cassie no matter what it takes.

Night’s Awakening

The dark immortal warriors were never meant to experience human desire. But when Guy, a member of an ancient order of shape-shifting warriors, meets Elena—a mere mortal whose beauty and blind ambition shakes him to his core—all bets are off...

Sloan insists on taking her new employee caving, much to Elena’s dismay. Elena’s not really into it but Sloan insists and since Sloan is her new boss she decides to humor her. Unfortunately Sloan also insists that she needs to investigate a shaft that she’s found once they’re deep in the cave. That doesn’t turn out so well for Sloan and leaves Elena alone in a cave she can’t get out of with a severely sprained ankle. Luckily she is saved by 3 Dragon Kings who are all big and fierce but also very kind – especially one, Guy.

Guy is almost immediately smitten with Elena but Con, the King of the Dragon Kings, knows something more is going on with Sloan and Elena being on Dragon King land. He fears that someone knows about them being dragon shifters and they must put a stop to it before any of their secrets get out. They decide to investigate Elena’s place of work, PureGems, in London, to see if they can find who knows what.

While all the decisions are being made Guy and Elena are getting closer together and quickly falling in love. Guy wants nothing more than to keep Elena safe but she knows she must help find anyone who has it out for the Dragon Kings and agrees when they decide to make her bait.

Dawn’s Desire

For centuries, the Dragon Kings have hidden their shapeshifting powers from the world. But when a mortal enemy threatens to expose them, the warrior Banan must leave his secret lair in the Highlands to risk his life for the dragons within—and resist the temptations of human love.

PureGems’ London base is run by Richard Arnold. His secretary is Jane Holden. Banan, a Dragon King, is acting as a chauffer for the company so that he can see who needs investigating further. Jane meets Banan when he drives her to the airport. Almost immediately they’re attracted to each other and Banan approaches Jane to have dinner with him. She eventually finds out that he and his friends need info about Richard Arnold and she agrees to help, but then believes that Banan only approached her for her help – not because he liked her. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Though the spell had been cast on the Dragon Kings so that they wouldn’t feel for humans, that apparently doesn’t apply when it comes to the Kings’ fated mates. Jane is Banan’s and he doesn’t want to let her out of his site once he realizes that she is his one and only. He can’t be with her at all times, however, and soon the person who knows more than he should about the Dragon Kings is kidnapping Jane.


The three first stories in the Dark Kings series were pretty entertaining. Yes, the stories move fast and the couples fall in love quickly but when you’re fated to be together, why wait, right? lol Even though each story had the insta-lust theme and the pairings were fast it all worked for me.

In the second book we started to see what would be a continuing story ARC and that made the story that much better. I can only assume that the next novel continues where book 0.3 (Dawn’s Desire) left off and we’ll eventually find out who the villain is. I gotta be honest, I’m dying to know.

There is a bonus story in the book called Passions Claim that continued Balan and Jane’s story as well as showed us a big problem in Elena and Guy’s relationship. I admit I don’t normally enjoy reading about tension between lovers after they’ve had their HEA but it is reality and this one had a happy ending so it was all good.

If you don’t mind fated mates and you’re a fan of dragon and shifter stories then this book is definitely one you need to read. 


Rating: 4 out of 5

Donna Grant

Review: Secrets and Sins: Raphael by Naima Simone

When Greer Addison finds her future husband in bed with another woman, she runs…right into the arms of dark and dangerous Raphael Marcel. Angry and hurt, she throws caution to the wind and spends a hot night with the sexy security specialist. But when her fiancé is found dead, Greer becomes the main suspect of a crime she can’t remember.

Raphael is stunned and suspicious when Greer shows up on his doorstep claiming she’s carrying his baby. Worse, she’s the target of a stalker bent on making her pay for a murder she doesn’t recall. As Raphael begins to trust Greer, they must race against the clock to uncover a killer.
Because Greer’s memory is returning...


Greer Addison comes from money, but not a happy home. Her parents are more worried about appearances than they are about protecting or nurturing their children. When Greer finds her fiancé Gavin in bed with another woman she calls off the wedding. Of course her parents try to talk her back into it but she refuses. Over the years she’s watched her mother takes all kinds of abuse from her tyrant father because she “loved” him. If that’s love then Greer wants no part of it. She was marrying for companionship and a family.

Drowning her sorrows in a bar sounds like a good idea so she heads off and ends up meeting Raphael Marcel there. He is a security expert that she and her now ex-fiance had met the previous week when talking about security for their future home. Greer is incredibly attracted to Raphael and he makes it known that he feels the same. They end up leaving together and spending most of the night in the back of his SUV having wild sex (they couldn’t wait long enough to get to either of their homes). When Raphael drops Greer off at her home she wants to invite him up but decides that it’s not a good idea. When she gets to her apartment her ex-fiance is there on the floor, having been stabbed to death. She gets hit over the head and she blacks out.

After spending 3 days in the hospital Greer is at the police station being accused of murder. She has an alibi with Raphael but she was discovered lying next to Gavin with the knife in her hand – pretty damning evidence. Greer would love to say that she didn’t do it but she has a hole in her memory. She remembers being dropped off by Raphael and then waking up in the hospital – everything else is a complete blank.

Four months go by and while she’s released she’s not exactly cleared as the police are still investigating. Greer, now pregnant with Raphael’s child, is staying with her brother as she couldn’t bring herself to return to her apartment/scene of the crime. She’s been getting intimidating letters from an anonymous source but suddenly those start stepping up and Greer decides to seek help from the security expert, Raphael.

Raphael is stunned when Greer walks into his office and claims she’s pregnant by him. This happened to him once before and he was betrayed by the woman he thought he loved. He decides to protect Greer but he refuses to get involved with her or the baby as his heart wouldn’t be able to take it if he started hoping and he was crushed once again. Raphael soon learns that Greer is like no rich socialite he’s ever met and his heart is soon hers.

I was pleasantly surprised when I finished this book. I really enjoyed the characters and the mystery kept me thinking as well. I have to say I’m usually darned good at figuring out who the villain is but this one kept me guessing until almost the end - impressive.

The romance between Raphael and Greer was very sweet, imho. I really liked the softer side of Raphael when he allowed himself to actually feel and be himself. When he was trying to hold himself back he could be a bit of an ass but the rest of the time he was my kind of guy. Loving, concerned, protective, intelligent, kind, funny and oh, so sexy. Greer had had a wealthy upbringing but no love to speak of. Her parents sucked, as I’ve mentioned, and then she thinks all’s well when she gets engaged to her friend only to find out that he’s in it for the money and a position in her father’s bank. Kind of spirit crushing to find that no one wants you for you, you know? Greer was incredibly sad and lonely during the greater part of the book but she tried not to show it too much as she wanted to be thought of as an strong woman. She loved Raphael and at the very least wanted to be friends with him so that they could co-parent their child. In the end they were explosive together and their personalities meshed well. 


While the book started with a bang and ended with a bang, it was a little slow for my liking in the middle. Despite that I thought this was a pretty good book. It also made me interested in eventually reading the first two books in the series – which is a good thing. :)

Rating: 3.75/4 out of 5

Naima Simone


Review: The Kraken King Part V: The Kraken King and the Iron Heart by Meljean Brook

Warning: This review contains spoilers from Parts I, II, III & IV of The Kraken King.

With their lives and the fate of an empire at stake, Ariq is forced to leave Zenobia behind. Held captive by their enemies, Zenobia can only pray that Ariq keeps his promise to come for her—until a terrible loss prods her to action.

Ariq has no intention of handing over the Skybreaker to the two men responsible for the marauders’ attacks against Krakentown—but without a ransom to give them, Ariq must risk everything to rescue Zenobia and stop the swarming forces bent on destruction…


Zenobia and Ariq have been kidnapped and separated. Ariq has been taken to show the rebels the location of the Skybreaker, a war machine that the rebels plan on using against the current Khagan. Ariq, of course has no desire to see the Skybreaker in the hands of the fools who want it. Not only would it destroy the
Khagan and his followers, it would also destroy many innocents as well, and Ariq wants no part of it. He also wants nothing more than to get back to Zenobia. He promised her he would rescue her and so he will.

He risks a daring escape to find her, but Zenobia is not where he left her. The ironship that carries Zenobia has sailed and Zenobia worries that Ariq won’t be able to find her. On top of that the man who holds her captive forces her to stop writing and tells lies about Ariq that makes her start believing that Ariq won’t come for her. Her old doubts and fears about her worth rear their ugly heads and Zenobia decides that she must escape on her own.

While Zenobia and Ariq spend the better part of this installment apart I never felt that they were far from each other in spirit. They each had the other foremost in their minds and it solidified the importance of the relationship in my mind. The fact that while they feared for their own lives but were still thinking of the other first, spoke to me of selflessness and true love.

Ariq also finds out from Zenobia some disturbing information about Krakentown. He needs to get back to the Red City to secure help from Helene’s husband, the French Ambassador, but he knows it won’t be easy. He looks forward to spending more time with Zenobia but knows that he must do his all to save Krakentown. 


Man I love Ariq! He’s one hot man but he’s always putting others first – thinking of Zenobia and Krakentown before himself. I love what a protector he is to those he loves. Zenobia in this story showed me her true inner strength.  Her determination to save herself and the plan she had to execute it was pretty brilliant.  I applauded her as she went about wielding her sleeve full of gold coins - they packed a punch!

The descriptions of the airship that Ariq is on, the ironship that Zenobia is on and then eventually of a balloon were so vivid I almost felt as if I was riding in each one of them. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I love Brook’s writing. She sucks me in and doesn’t let go – no matter how long or short the episode/novel is. I’m so looking forward to seeing how the relationship between Zenobia and Ariq progresses.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Meljean Brook

What I Read Last Week

How y'all doin?  Hope you had a nice weekend.  Happy belated Mother's Day to all of the Mother's out there - I hope your day was wonderful.  I spent mine with my husband's family (since my fam all moved away! *sniff*) and that was a lot of fun.  

Let's see...what's going on in my life?  Not a lot.  My oldest has a new boyfriend - ug. lol  I've only met him once but he seems nice - always a good thing.
My youngest is gearing up for her 6th grade graduation and getting ready for 7th grade (OMG Jr. High! lol).  I was thinking about it yesterday and realized she'll be in the graduating class of 2020.  That cracks me up for some reason.  I think because back in the 70's everyone thought we'd all be driving flying cars and/or spaceships by then. Too funny.  We're not quite in the space age yet. :)

On to what I read...

I started off the week with The Kraken King Part VI: The Kraken King and the Crumbling Walls by Meljean Brook.  I was on a roll with parts 4 & 5 so I had to read 6!! Zenobia and Ariq are getting closer as they try to save Krakentown.  I can't tell you much because I don't want to give any spoilers but it was good! My review will post on the 20th.  4.25 out of 5

Next up was Secrets and Sin: Raphael by Naima Simone.  This book has Greer drowning her sorrows after her engagement is broken and spending a torrid night with Raphael.  She is then accused of murdering her ex-fiance and she also find herself pregnant.  The story was a good one.  I did have a bit of an issue with Greer but it was still good.  3.75/4 out of 5

My next read was Sir, Yes Sir by Dinah McLeod.  This is a book in a series called Old Fashioned Husbands.  It's a story that involves domestic discipline and that's just not my cup of tea. Despite that I thought it was a decent read.  The story has a former Army man coming to terms with life outside the military and his wife dealing with his mood swings.  3 out of 5

Just for the Weekend by Susanne Matthews is the story of Cleo and Sam.  Cleo is a kindergarten teacher who is helping out an author friend at a sci-fi convention in Vegas.  Sam is the man who can't get Cleo out of his head.  They get together for just the weekend but Cleo knows it can't last.  She thinks he's a Chippendale dancer and with her hometown holding her to a high standard she can't be with him.  He's actually a multi-millionaire who is trying to figure out if Cleo wants him or his money.  It was a darned good read and one I really enjoyed.  4 out of 5 (read for Book Binge)

Three French Hens by Lynsay Sands is a novella that has Joan, a French woman, who doesn't want to marry the man she's betrothed to.  She finds a maid, Brinna, who looks like her and pays her to be Joan, with Brinna understanding that it's just for a day or two.  Brinna, however, falls in love with Joan's betrothed which she really wasn't supposed to do.  This is a really cute story and I loved Brinna. Royce, the betrothed, was a sexy beast and a great guy and I wanted nothing more than for him and Brinna to be together.  4 out of 5

Dark Heat: The Dark Kings Stories by Donna Grant was a compilation of 3 novella's having to do with the Dragon Kings.  Each story has a fated mate and pretty much insta-lust but they all worked for me one way or another.  I'll post my review this week. 4 out of 5

Next up was Hard to Hold by Incy Black.  This story is about a single woman who goes out and gets IVF to have a baby.  Now someone is trying to kill her.  Her ex-husband gets involved even though she doesn't want him to.  She still loves him and he her but they have so many issues between them it's almost insurmountable.  The story is more suspense than romance but it does have it's own special blend of romance - and not the sweet, gentle kind.  Anna and Nick are at loggerheads almost the entire book and besides the outside "evil forces" the book is really about them working through their issues in their lives and in their relationship.  It was good - I just don't have a clue how to rate it.  I finished the book 2 days ago and I still don't know.  I'll get back to you on that. (read for Book Binge)

Last for the week was an oldie but goodie called The Deed by Lynsay Sands.  This was Sands' first book and it made me laugh yet again.  Emma has an audience with the King because her husband of two years has never consummated the marriage.  The husband dies on his way back to follow the King's orders to do the consummating and Emma's immediately ordered by the King marry someone else (else her lands will fall to her husband's mother and Bertrand (a relative but I can't remember the relationship).  He thinks she must be a hag, I mean, why else would a man not bed his wife for 2 years???  She's not a hag and Amaury actually has a hard time holding himself back from bedding her immediately. Emma's got self esteem issues and Amaury's got someone after him and a temper to boot.  The whole story had me smiling because Emma was just so naive (but still highly intelligent) and Amaury had no patience at first but became a great hero.  Just a cute medieval romance.  3 out of 5

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
*crickets*

Happy Reading!!


What I Read Last Week

Hey there!

Well it’s back to the daily grind for me after a fun-filled weekend with my sister. She was in San Diego for a conference but extended her stay over the weekend so that I could go down and stay with her and her business partner – who also happens to be her sister-in-law, Sandy, who I love to pieces. We had a great time eating and drinking and sightseeing – so much fun. I haven’t seen my sister in about 3 years so it was wonderful getting caught up in person. I love Skype and FaceTime but nothing beats having the person there next to you. :) 

 


Because of my busy social life *snort* I didn’t get all that much reading done. On the train down there I did a little but the train rides along the coast it and it was so beautiful I kept getting distracted. Then on the way home I was so damn tired I kept closing my eyes. FYI – this makes reading difficult.

Anyway, what I did read was… 

It Happened One Wedding by Julie James. This is another one of Julie’s wonderful romances that involved Vaughn the FBI agent and Sidney the investment banker. They’re thrown together by their siblings who are getting married but they’re not happy about it as they don’t like each other. That changes as they get to know each other and they soon become friends, and then much more. I can’t say enough good things about this book. It was just my cup of tea and definitely recommend it. My review will post this week. 5 out of 5

Next up was Her Perfect Mate by Paige Tyler. This story is about a covert ops group that works under the Homeland Security umbrella. They employ shifters (they have animal DNA and can partially shift but not actually turn into the animals) and pair them with military men. Ivy is the shifter and Landon is the military man. Ivy has had bad luck with past partners so is leery of Landon. Landon is more than a bit surprised about the shifter thing but it doesn’t stop him from lusting after Ivy. Though they try to stay away from each other love soon blooms. This was an unexpected treat. I really liked the story, the main characters and the secondary characters. I’ll post a full review of this one this week. 4 out of 5

Next up was Never Entice an Earl by Lily Dalton. The story has our heroine who is the granddaughter of an Earl taking her ladies maids place dancing in a brothel when the maid is too ill. The maid’s family is in trouble due to borrowed money and she must dance or her family’s business will be ruined. Cormack is looking for a secret club – of which one man ruined his now deceased sister. Cormack meets Daphne but believes her to be the ladies maid, Kate. When Cormack finds out who Daphne is he blackmails her into helping him find the man he’s looking for. They have undeniable attraction but Daphne swore never to marry so there’s lots of tension. This was a cute book that was pretty darned enjoyable. I liked the story although some things were a tad far-fetched. The ending got tied up a little bit too easily for my liking but not enough to ruin the story entirely. 3.5 out of 5  

Last for the week was The Kraken King Part V: The Kraken King and the Iron Heart by Meljean Brook. In this installment Zenobia and Ariq are getting closer but there are lots of things that stand in their way. I can’t tell you too much cuz it’ll ruin it for you. I’ll post my review next week on May 13th. 4.25 out of 5

  





My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
The Affair by Lily Maxton 

Survive to Dawn by PJ Schnyder
Romancing the Runaway by Wendy Soliman

Happy Reading!


FYI...I'm an idiot. lol  I had this all written out on Monday and ready to post.  Then I actually scheduled it for next week rather than just hit publish, that's why it's posting on a Friday. WTF?  Told ya, idiot. :) 
 

Review: Her Perfect Mate by Paige Tyler

When Special Forces Captain Landon Donovan is picked for an assignment with the Department of Covert Affairs, he’s stunned to find his new partner is a beautiful woman who looks like she couldn’t hurt a fly, much less take down a terrorist.

Ivy Halliwell isn’t your average covert op. Her feline DNA means she can literally bring out the claws when things get dicey. She isn’t thrilled to be paired with yet another military grunt, but Landon is different. He doesn’t think she’s a freak and he’s smokin’ hot.

Soon they find themselves facing a threat even greater than anyone imagines...and an animal magnetism impossible to ignore.


Ivy Halliwell has had really bad luck when it’s come to partners while working in the Department of Covert Affairs. One attacked her and tried to rape her and the other thought she was useless and got himself killed by ignoring her skills. When Ivy meets her new partner, Landon Donovan, she’s not sure what will happen but she knows that he’s one gorgeous man.

Landon is taken from the middle of a Special Forces operation and taken to a location where he’s told this is where he’d now be working. To say that he’s not happy about it is an understatement but he tries to go with the flow as best he can to see what’s up before he puts up too much of a stink. He meets his new partner, Ivy, and when they tell him to fight her put her on the floor he thinks it’s going to be child’s play. He doesn’t realize that she’s a shifter and has extraordinary strength and skills. He’s impressed as well as a bit smitten. Ivy is gorgeous and it’s work not to show everyone the sexual thoughts he’s having.

They train for only a day together before they're thrown into a live operation – which is unheard of. They work well together but Ivy seems to have a bit of a control issue with her animal taking over. They manage to get through it and are then given another assignment. Find out what’s going on with disappearing scientists. They find more than they bargain for and end up falling upon a medial experiment that could threaten humans all over the globe.

While this is happening, Ivy and Landon finally decide that they can’t stay away from each other and figure out that it’s not just sex but so much more between the two of them. If they can stay alive they may have a chance to be together.

This was a really entertaining book! I wasn’t sure what to expect but what I found was an intriguing, well written story, a great little romance, and enough action to keep my eyes stuck on the pages.

I liked both Ivy and Landon and loved them together. I must say that I was a little confused that Landon didn’t react more to the news that Ivy was a shifter, but I guess being in Special Forces he’d seen his fair share of odd things. I loved his SF team as well. The team meets Ivy and Landon when they’re in town and the camaraderie between them all worked for me.

The story about the scientists was interesting and exciting. The romance was definitely an HEA but the ongoing story with the scientists was left open. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Paige Tyler